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Day 17: still imflammation, headaches. Finding sensitivities from compliant foods. Restart or keep going?


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Hi!  This is my first time following Whole30 and communicating on this Forum, so I'd really appreciate people's feedback!  I started this program because of chronic inflammation from food sensitivities that caused constant coughing (other medical reasons were ruled out prior to starting).  The cough and inflammation go away when I avoid trigger foods, so I know this is the path for me.  I seem to be having a reverse experience and am not sure if I need to restart or keep going.   I've been compliant with all my food intake, am drinking water and doing light yoga each day for exercise.  But I am discovering that some compliant foods are giving me headaches and inflammation, which makes the cough return.   Most of week one felt like tiger blood for me and no coughing (so awesome!!).   I followed my favorite recipes that were compliant and did well, no new foods were introduced.  Week 2 left me with a violent headache and swelling because some compliant foods -- olives, and "spices" on an otherwise compliant label -- did me in.  I continued my overall route and kept going without those foods.  This week I used almond meal in place of breadcrumbs for homemade fishcakes (just unsalted cod, onoins, potates and almond meal fried in avocado oil).  Plus I tried one of the approved brand's lemon and garlic dressing.  More inflammation with constant coughing, a slight headache and sluggish in the morning.  In the past I coughed when eating almonds, but wasn't certain that was the cause.  I suspect I'm sensitive to almonds and something in the dressing (those "spices" again!).  Do I need to keep going and exclude trigger foods as I find them or restart the cycle each time? 

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I would keep excluding the trigger foods, and when you get to day 30, evaluate how you're feeling about the whole thing -- you may decide at that point you're feeling enough better that you want to keep going for a while, or you may be over the whole thing and ready to move on, but either way, I don't think there's any reason for you to need to make that decision right now.

Have you figured out what the foods you're reacting to have in common at all? You've figured out that the almonds are an issue, but do you have any idea what spices are causing issues? If you know, you might be able to look for all the items in that same group and avoid them all, rather than accidentally stumbling across them here and there. For instance, if you think it's peppers (and for spices, things like cayenne, or pepper flakes, or chili powder), then you might have issues with nightshades.  It is kind of annoying that companies can just list "spices" without saying what they are. If you contact the company and explain you had a reaction and are trying to narrow down what caused it, they might tell you more specifically what the spices in that product are, or they might not, but it could be worth trying. 

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Thank you Shannon!  I was leaning toward your suggestions for cycle timing and contacting the manufactuers.  Appreciate the confirmation.  Briliant suggestion about looking for patterns with the trigger foods.  Will definitely be more efficient, especially since I'm looking at doing a slower reintroduction.  Really appreciate your thoughtfulness and wonderful suggestions.   I feel supported to keep going now.  Will let you know how I end up after 30 days.  Best to you!

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I'm having a similar experience.  On my day 9, I had three suspicious BM's within two hours - before, during, and after breakfast.  A few hours later I became nauseous, skipped lunch and had a long afternoon nap with upset stomach.  I've had no issues and plenty of energy before that.

Along with my body itching, which I think is likely ketosis, I am considering a food sensitivity.  A previous allergy test indicated that I have minor sensitivity to eggs, although I've never had an issue with eggs.  For W30, avocados are new to me, and i like them, but...  l am going to refrain from both for a few more days and then reintroduce.

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